Theri rests entirely on Vijay's shoulders, feels S Saraswathi.
Atlee made his directorial debut with the brilliant Raja Rani in 2013. He returns with his second venture, an action entertainer titled Theri, starring Vijay.
After the disastrous Puli, Theri seems to be an all-out attempt to restore Vijay’s mass appeal.
Produced by Kalaipuli S Thanu, the film has Vijay in not one, but three avatars.
Amy Jackson and Samantha play his love interest at different stages in his life, while Baby Nainika, the adorable daughter of actress Meena, plays Vijay’s daughter Nivi.
Despite the presence of two glamorous divas, it is Vijay’s beautiful chemistry with Nivi and his easy relationship with his mother (played by Raadhika Sarathkumar) that stays with you.
The film opens with Vijay as a single father Joseph. Meek and timid, Joseph prefers to stay out of trouble and runs a bakery.
Annie (Amy) comes into his life as Nivi’s school teacher. Even as the three begin to bond, an incident with some local rowdies ruins their peaceful life.
In a scene that is completely reminiscent of Rajinikanth’s Baasha, the true identity of Joseph is revealed. The flashback takes us back a few years when Vijay is an assistant commissioner terrorizing the bad guys.
The film then turns into your regular revenge saga with the powerful minister and his evil son.
Vijay plays the perfect son, lover, husband and father. Every scene seems to worship the actor and bear testimony to his perfectness.
The film overdoses on not only mass moments and action, but on sentiments too.
Though moving at a brisk pace, the predictability in the narration is a huge drawback. The film follows a set pattern, continually moving from comedy to sentiments, followed by action and ending with a song, before it begins all over again.
Cinematography by George C Williams is top notch, while GV Prakash’s background score and songs have the audience dancing on its feet.
Samantha plays a relatively larger role as Vijay’s wife, but creates no impact. Neither does Amy, in her holier-than-thou teacher avatar.
Baby Nainika wins everyone’s heart with her spontaneity and natural charm.
Veteran director Mahendran, who plays the antagonist, comedy actor Rajendran and Raadhika give a neat performance.
The film is packed with characters, but Theri is a film that rests entirely on Vijay's shoulders.
The actor is undoubtedly a great entertainer and ensures there is never a dull moment. It is interesting to note how many of Vijay’s dialogues seemed to be aimed at the audience rather than the characters in the film.
While Atlee’s Theri may lack the refreshing simplicity of Raja Rani, it is a well-packaged commercial entertainer that is sure to thrill Vijay’s fans.